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JSTOR helps people discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content through a powerful research and teaching platform, and preserves this content for future generations. JSTOR is part of ITHAKA, a not-for-profit organization that also includes Ithaka S+R and Portico. For more information about JSTOR, please contact email@example.com. 132 THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF THEOLOGY hardly prepared for the paralysis which must follow despair as to the reserves of moral power resident in the great labor population. The policy of concerted political action on the part of labor, which the author advocates, demands a faith which the avalanche of woe and injustice seems temporarily to have swept away or buried. Not to make light of this candid and brave attack upon established institutions and property rights we feel that books written under the juniper tree often need to be revised by that still small voice which reveals unmeasured and unexhausted reserves making for righteousness. One thing, however, is evident: ordinary Christian faith produces today no such earnestness as does the socialism of this book. When a man believes a thing in this way what can he do but "cry aloud" ? Allan Hoben University op Chicago RITUAL AND BELIEF Modern functional psychology has had much to do with the trend of our present-day religious thought toward a fuller recognition of the value of ceremonial observances in the practice of religion, and we are indebted to the anthropologists for gathering from peoples in all parts of the earth, and of various grades of social culture and intellectual development, the proofs of the evolution of religion and of the essential r61e which ritual has played in its history. The three books before us, 1 though widely different in size, scope, and method of treatment, have as their common purpose the setting forth of some phase of this development. The work of Rev. D. C. Owen is the most general in its treatment, and contributes the least in the way of originality, or first-hand knowledge, purporting to be nothing more than a summarized statement of other men's investigations. Hardly has one entered on the perusal of this brief treatise, however, before the question of the interpretation of the facts set forth forces itself on one's consideration. Primitive man is said to recognize in nature a force superior to his own and to know "that it 1 Ritual and Relief: Studies in the History of Religion. By Edwin Sidney Hart- land. New York: Scribner, 1014. jriv+352 pages. $3.00. The Infancy of Religion. By D. C. Owen. London: Milford, 1014. vi+143 pages. 3s. 6d. Die volkstunUichen Feste des Jahres. By Martin P. Nilsson. (Religionsge- schichtliche Volksbilcher fur die deutsche christliche Gegenwart. III. Reihe, 17.-18. Heft.) Tubingen: Mohr, 19 14. 76 pages. M. 1.30. RITUAL AND BELIEF 133 is wielded by a living being stronger than himself. Since he is naturally disposed to the recognition of supernatural beings, any extraordinary feat of nature displayed before his eyes stimulates into activity his sense of their presence" (p. 25). It is always very easy for us to assume that a thing is natural because it seems so to us, and in this connection we may notice the further assumption that our natural endowment is superior to that of the savage, an idea that is not as popular among students of psychology today as it once was. The child of civilized parents if contrasted with the "rude man of uncivilized regions," and we are told that "from the mind of the child after it has been properly trained and educated you can hope for worthy results, but not from the mental apparatus of the savage. The soil of his nature is well-nigh barren. The memory of the child is a better instrument for its purpose, his imagination is more vivid and productive than that of the child-man of the undeveloped races." One is tempted to ask if barrenness in this instance is a characteristic of the soil, or is due to the unfortunate lack of the seed of experience. A striking example of divergence in interpretation is found in the explanation of the sacredness of some stones (p. 35) where this is attrib- uted to the shedding of the blood of a sacred animal upon the stones used in sacrifice, in flat contradiction to Farnell who attributes the sacredness of the animal to contact with the stone. 1 The essence of prayer is well said to be "the soul's unsatisfied desire, combined with a belief in a power able to set that desire at rest" (p. 92), and further: "When rude man has a dangerous business on hand, such as war, the sense of the danger he incurred is poignant in the extreme. The occasion is just the one for prayer" (p. 93). The conclusion of the book is that if man had been "deprived of the support of religion in his arduous ascent, he would continually have slipped back to the level whence he had started." In Ritual and Belief we have a contribution to the discussion of the evolution of religion "from the point of view of one who has been con- vinced that the emotions and imagination — and not merely the indi- vidual, but the collective emotions and imagination — have had at least as much to do with the generation of religious practises and beliefs as the reason, and that for the form they may have assumed, physical, social, and cultural influences must be held accountable" (pp. xiii, xiv). The greater part of the book is given up to a discussion of "The Relations of Religion and Magic." This has been expanded from two 1 Hibbert Journal, II, 313. 134 THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF THEOLOGY presidential addresses before the Anthropological Section of the British Association for the Advancement of Science. The author tells us that, in his opinion, we shall find the key to primitive philosophy in the relation of the personal and the impersonal, and we are at once plunged into the very midst of the dispute as to interpretation, for on the supposed dis- tinction between the two hangs the contention of the Animistic school of exponents. The difficulty lies in the fact that the savage has no such clear-cut consciousness of personality as we have, nor does he seem to have the equally clear-cut and opposing conception of things being «»»-personal. There is no doubt that primitive peoples think of almost everything as being imbued with some sort of life, as was pointed out in the work of Dussaud reviewed in these pages nearly a year ago (XVIII, 636). This Dussaud speaks of as a principe de vie, and Levy-Bruhl calls it la loi de participation} The only dispute is whether this life is actually conceived of in terms which we should call personal, as the "Animists" maintain, or whether it is only a sort of mechanical force, to use present- day terminology, as the "Dynamists" maintain. Hartland cites instances of the belief that personality — human personality — adheres. to or persists in the possessions of a person (and has civilization entirely banished this idea from our own minds?) which he thinks "exhibit a concept of personality imperfectly crystallized. It is still fluid and vague, only to become entirely definite under the influence of trained reason and larger and more scientific knowledge. But, such as it is, there is behind and around it the still vaguer, the unlimited territory of the Impersonal, because the Unknown" (p. 34). He then passes on to consider the orenda of the Iroquois, the manitou of the Algonquin, and the wakonda of the Omaha, all of which point to the same reality. What we appear to have, among the North American Indians, at least, is two distinct conceptions: the possession of what Hartland calls a "potentiality or atmosphere" of its own, by the individual personality — human or non-human; and a mysterious, undefined reservoir of an apparently impersonal power in the universe as a whole. But our author says that "these two conceptions are not mutually exclusive, for the impersonal power is often held to be the source of the personal power or potentiality" (p. 45), and so we find ourselves no nearer an understand- ing of the difference than we were before! We have noted these variations of what appears to be a single idea, rather to call attention again to the difficulty of interpretation, than with any intention of attempting to distinguish between them, but also 1 Les Fonctions mentales dans les soctitts inftrieures, pp. 68 ff ., Paris, 1910. RITUAL AND BELIEF 135 because they form the background of the author's discussion of the relations of religion and magic. He concludes the first section, which he calls "The Common Root," with these words: "I venture to suggest that in man's emotional response to his environment, in his interpretation in the terms of personality of the objects which encountered his attention, and in their investiture by him with potentiality, atmosphere, orenda, mana — call it by what name you will — we have the common root of magic and religion" (p. 66). He finds, as does Shrader, 1 that they differ only in their method of approach. The spells of magic are "drafts upon heaven, for which the gods cannot refuse payment" (p. 87), while the gods of religion "are personal, are endowed with free will, are to be approached with true worship, and may or may not grant the prayers of their suppliants" (p. 88). The rest of the essay is given up to the development and the differ- entiation of these two ways of dealing with the mysterious power in the universe. The relation of ritual to both magic and religion is explained on the theory of an emotional reaction, natural and almost involuntary at first, which in proportion to the magnitude of the cause which provoked the emotion, or the extent to which it had affected the individuals, becomes established in memory and by repetition, and reinstatement of the emo- tion soon establishes itself as a habit. This form of reaction would end in a solemn rite, endowed with the power to produce the effect with which it is now inseparably associated. In other words, "ritual, reli- gious or magical, is evolved long before belief has become definite and cogent"(p. 119). Professor Nilsson, of Lund, Sweden, says in his preface that he has attempted to "supply a presentation of the Christian year and its his- tory, in which the popular element shall have full consideration," a sort of investigation which he thinks has been "scandalously neglected" by Protestant investigators since the pioneer Usener. The main theme of the exposition is what we should probably call " evergreens " (Maienzweig) and their use in popular festivals, in which the author finds the last remnant of an early and widespread cult of trees, which was particularly powerful among Indo-Germanic peoples (p. 6). Because the power dwelling in the trees — orenda again, though not known as such — is pri- marily a vegetation spirit, we find the use of its emblems in connection with the festivals of Springtime and Harvest, and the related ceremonies have come to be associated with many of the festivals of the Christian year. 1 Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics, II, 40. 136 THE AMERICAN JOURNAL OF THEOLOGY Two interesting pieces of folk-lore connected with the observance of New Year and Christmas must close this brief summary. The festival of the New Year is traced to the entrance into office of the rex bibendi of the Saturnalia at Rome, from the year 153 B.C., which led to this day becoming the popularly recognized beginning of the year, and thus gave rise to its name, and its celebration with feasting and decorations (p. 58). This may be the history of our New Year, but will hardly explain the same customs in the Orient. The Christmas tree, we must admit, has, like most of our Christmas toys, been "made in Germany." The first historical mention of it is said to have been in Strasburg in 1605 (p. 17), and it found its way to England with the Prince Consort in 1840, though reaching this country earlier with the first German emigrants. We are told quite seriously that "it is now quite common in London" ("in London ist er jetzt recht haufig") (p. 20). Whatever may be the correct interpretation of these and other per- sistent customs and ritual observances, their original and continued association with the religious life cannot be gainsaid. Shall they con- tinue and religion disappear ? Or again shall we succeed in preserving religion without them ? ^ yj Cooke Chicago, III. MODERN RELIGIOUS MOVEMENTS IN INDIA 1 After his coronation in London four years ago, when King George V of Great Britain was preparing to proceed to the Durbar in Delhi there in person to proclaim and assume his sovereignty as emperor of India, he ordered to be brought to him the clearest, fairest handbook on the chief religion of the foreign country over which he was to rule. The book which was selected was A Primer of Hinduism by Mr. John N. Farquhar, M.A. No ardent Hindu and no erudite western scholar had produced a book at once so scholarly, discriminating, illuminating for a summary friendly acquaintance with the religion of the more than two hundred million Hindus. Two years later the same author followed up that resume of the historical development and the present condition of Hinduism with another even more notable treatment of the same vast subject. Far- quhar's The Crown of Hinduism is the pre-eminent Christian critique of the chief factors in Hinduism and of the system as a whole. 1 Modem Religious Movements in India. By J. N. Farquhar. New York: Macmillan, 1915. xvi+471 pages. $2.50.